505.01  DANGEROUS, NUISANCE AND VICIOUS DOGS; DOGS AND OTHER ANIMALS RUNNING AT LARGE.
   (a)   For the purpose of this section, the following definitions shall apply unless the context clearly indicates or requires a different meaning:
      (1)   “Dangerous dog".  A dog that, without provocation, has done any of the following:
         A.    Caused injury, other than killing or serious injury, to any person;
         B.   Killed another dog;
         C.   Been the subject of a third or subsequent violation of Division (C) of Section 955.22 of the Ohio Revised Code.
         "Dangerous dog" does not include a police dog that has caused injury, other than killing or serious injury, to any person or has killed another dog while the dog is being used to assist law enforcement officers in the performance of their official duties.
      (2)   "Menacing fashion".  A dog that would cause any person being chased or approached to reasonably believe that the dog will cause physical injury to that person.
      (3)   "Nuisance dog".  A dog that without provocation and while off the premises of its owner, keeper, or harborer has chased or approached a person  in either a menacing fashion or an apparent attitude of attack or has attempted to bite or otherwise endanger any person.  "Nuisance dog" does not include a police dog that while being used to assist law enforcement officers in the performance of their official duties has chased or approached a person in either a menacing fashion or an apparent attitude of attack or has attempted to bite or otherwise endanger any person.
      (4)   "Police dog".  A dog that has been trained and may be used to assist one or more law enforcement officers in the performance of their official duties.
      (5)   "Serious injury".
         A.   Any physical harm that carries a substantial risk of death;
         B.   Any physical harm that involves a permanent incapacity, whether partial or total, or a temporary substantial incapacity;   
         C.   Any physical harm that involves a permanent disfigurement or a temporary, serious disfigurement;
         D.   Any physical harm that involves acute pain of a duration that results in substantial suffering or any degree of prolonged or intractable pain.
      (6)   "Vicious dog". 
         A.   A dog that without provocation and subject to Division B. of this definition has killed or caused serious injury to any person;
         B.   "Vicious dog" does not include either of the following:
            1.   A police dog that has killed or caused serious injury to any person while the dog is being used to assist law enforcement officers in the performance of their official duties;
            2.   A dog that has killed or caused serious injury to any person while a person was committing or attempting to commit a trespass or other criminal offense on the property of the owner, keeper or harborer of the dog.
      (7)   "Without provocation".  A dog acts "without provocation" when it was not teased, tormented, or abused by a person, or it was not coming to the aid or the defense of a person who was not engaged in illegal or criminal activity and who was not using the dog as a means of carrying out such activity.
   (b)   A person who is the owner or has charge of any animal shall not permit it to run at large in the public road, highway, street, lane, or alley, or upon unenclosed land, or permit them to go upon any private yard, lot, or enclosure without the consent of the owner of the yard, lot, or enclosure.
   (c)   No person shall cause animals to be herded, kept, or detained for the purpose of grazing on premises other than those owned or occupied by the owner or keeper thereof without the consent of the owner of the premises.
   (d)   The running at large of such animal in or upon any of the places mentioned in Divisions (b) or (c) above is prima facie evidence that it is running at large in violation of this section.
   (e)   No owner, keeper, or harborer of any female dog shall permit it to go beyond the premises of the owner, keeper, or harborer at any time the dog is in heat unless the dog is properly in leash.
   (f)   Except when a dog is lawfully engaged in hunting and accompanied by the owner, keeper, harborer, or handler of the dog, no owner, keeper, or harborer of any dog shall fail at any time to do either of the following:
      (1)   Keep the dog physically confined or restrained upon the premises of the owner, keeper, or harborer by a leash, tether, adequate fence, supervision, or  secure enclosure to prevent escape;
      (2)   Keep the dog under the reasonable control of some person.
   (g)   Except when a dangerous dog is lawfully engaged in hunting or training for the purpose of hunting and is accompanied by the owner, keeper, harborer, or handler of the dog, no owner, keeper, or harborer of a dangerous dog shall fail to do either of the following:
      (1)   While the dog is on the premises of the owner, keeper, or harborer, securely confine it at all times in a locked pen that has a top, locked fenced yard, or other locked enclosure that has a top.
      (2)   While the dog is off the premises of the owner, keeper, or harborer, keep the dog on a chain-link leash or tether that is not more than six (6) feet in length and additionally do at least one of the following:  keep the dog in a locked pen that has a top, locked fenced yard, or other locked enclosure that has a top; have the leash or tether controlled by a person who is of suitable age and discretion or securely attach, tie, or affix the leash or tether to the ground or a stationary object or fixture so that the dog is adequately restrained and station a person in close enough proximity to that dog so as to prevent it from causing injury to any person; or muzzle that dog.
   (h)   No person who has been convicted of or pleaded guilty to three or more violations of subsection (f) hereof involving the same dog and no owner, keeper, or harborer of a dangerous dog shall fail to do the following:
      (1)   Obtain liability insurance with an insurer authorized to write liability insurance in this State providing coverage in each occurrence because of damage or bodily injury to or death of a person caused by the dangerous dog if so ordered by a court and provide proof of that liability insurance upon request to any law enforcement officer, County Dog Warden, or public health official charged with enforcing this section;
      (2)   Obtain a dangerous dog registration certificate from the County Auditor, affix a tag that identifies the dog as a dangerous dog to the dog's collar and ensure that the dog wears the collar and tag at all times;
      (3)   Notify the local Dog Warden immediately if any of the following occurs:
         A.   The dog is loose or unconfined;
         B.   The dog bites a person, unless the dog is on the property of the owner of the dog, and the person who is bitten is unlawfully trespassing or committing a criminal act within the boundaries of that property;
         C.   The dog attacks another animal while the dog is off the property of the owner of the dog;
      (4)   If the dog is sold, given to another person, or dies, notify the County Auditor within ten (10) days of the sale, transfer, or death.
   (i)   No person shall do any of the following:
      (1)   Debark or surgically silence a dog that the person knows or has reason to believe is a dangerous dog;
      (2)   Possess a dangerous dog if the person knows or has reason to believe that the dog has been debarked or surgically silenced;
      (3)   Falsely attest on a waiver form provided by the veterinarian under division (j) of this section that the person's dog is not a dangerous dog or otherwise provide false information on that written waiver form.
   (j)   Before a veterinarian debarks or surgically silences a dog, the veterinarian may give the owner of the dog a written waiver form that attests that the dog is not a dangerous dog.  The written waiver form shall include all of the following:
      (1)   The veterinarian's license number and current business address;
      (2)   The number of the license of the dog if the dog is licensed;
      (3)   A reasonable description of the age, coloring, and gender of the dog as well as any notable markings on the dog;
      (4)   The signature of the owner of the dog attesting that the owner's dog is not a dangerous dog;
      (5)   A statement that division (F) of Ohio R.C. 955.22 prohibits any person from doing any of the following:
         A.   Debarking or surgically silencing a dog that the person knows or has reason to believe is a dangerous dog;
         B.   Possessing a dangerous dog if the person knows or has reason to believe that the dog has been debarked or surgically silenced;
         C.   Falsely attesting on a waiver form provided by the veterinarian under division (G) of Ohio R.C. 955.22 that the person's dog is not a dangerous dog or otherwise provide false information on that written waiver form.
   (k)   It is an affirmative defense to a charge of a violation of Division (i) of this section that the veterinarian who is charged with the violation obtained, prior to debarking or surgically silencing the dog, a written waiver form that complies with Division (j) of this section and that attests that the dog is not a dangerous dog.
   (l)   Whoever violates Divisions (b) or (c) of this section is guilty of a misdemeanor of the fourth degree.  (ORC 951.99)
   (m)   (1)   Whoever violates Divisions (e) or (f) of this section that involves a dog that is not a nuisance dog, dangerous dog, or vicious dog shall be fined not less than twenty-five dollars ($25.00) or more than one hundred dollars ($100.00) on a first offense; and on each subsequent offense shall be fined not less than seventy-five dollars ($75.00) or more than two hundred fifty dollars ($250.00) and may be imprisoned for not more than thirty (30) days.
      (2)   In addition to the penalties prescribed in Division (m)(1) above, if the offender is guilty of a violation of Division (e) or (f) of this section that involves a dog that is not a nuisance dog, dangerous dog, or vicious dog, the court may order the offender to personally supervise the dog that the offender owns, keeps, or harbors, to cause that dog to complete dog obedience training, or to do both.
   (n)   (1)   Whoever commits a violation of Division (f) of this section that involves a nuisance dog is guilty of a minor misdemeanor on the first offense and of a misdemeanor of the fourth degree on each subsequent offense involving the same dog.  Upon a person being convicted of or pleading guilty to a third violation of Division (f) of this section involving the same dog, the court shall require the offender to register the involved dog as a dangerous dog.
      (2)   In addition to the penalties prescribed in Division (n)(1) above, if a violation of Division (f) of this section involves a nuisance dog, the court may order the offender to personally supervise the nuisance dog that the offender owns, keeps, or harbors, to cause that dog to complete dog obedience training, or to do both.
   (o)   Whoever commits a violation of Division (f) or (g) of this section that involves a dangerous dog, is guilty of a misdemeanor of the fourth degree on a first offense and of a misdemeanor of the third degree on each subsequent offense.  Additionally, the court may order the offender to personally supervise the dangerous dog that the offender owns, keeps, or harbors, to cause that dog to complete dog obedience training, or to do both, and the court may order the offender to obtain liability insurance pursuant to division (h) of this section.  The Court, in the alternative, may order the dangerous dog to be humanely destroyed by a licensed veterinarian, the County Dog Warden, or the County Humane Society at the owner's expense.  With respect to a violation of Division (f) of this section that involves a dangerous dog, until the Court makes a final determination and during the pendency of any appeal of a violation of that division and at the discretion of the Dog Warden, the dog shall be confined or restrained in accordance with Division (g) of this section or at the County Dog Pound at the owner's expense.
   (p)   Whoever commits a violation of division (f) of this section that involves a vicious dog is guilty of one of the following:
      (1)   A misdemeanor of the first degree if the dog causes serious injury to a person.  Additionally, the Court may order the vicious dog to be humanely destroyed by a licensed veterinarian, the County Dog Warden, or the County Humane Society at the owner's expense.
      (2)   A felony of the fourth degree if the dog kills a person.  Additionally, the Court    shall order that the vicious dog be humanely destroyed by a licensed veterinarian, the County Dog Warden, or the County Humane Society at the owner's expense.
   (q)   Whoever violates Division (h) (1),(3), or (4) of this section is guilty of a minor misdemeanor.
   (r)   Whoever violates Division (h)(2) of this section is guilty of a misdemeanor of the fourth degree.
   (s)   Whoever violates Division (i) of this section is guilty of a felony of the fourth degree to be prosecuted under appropriate state law.  Additionally, the Court shall order that the dog involved in the violation be humanely destroyed by a licensed veterinarian, the County Dog Warden, or the County Humane Society.
(Ord. 2012-103.  Passed 10-2-12.)